Call for emergency action to restore dietary diversity and protect global food systems in times of COVID-19 and beyond: Results from a cross-sectional study in 38 countries.

Publication date: Nov 01, 2023

The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed the fragility of the global food system, sending shockwaves across countries’ societies and economy. This has presented formidable challenges to sustaining a healthy and resilient lifestyle. The objective of this study is to examine the food consumption patterns and assess diet diversity indicators, primarily focusing on the food consumption score (FCS), among households in 38 countries both before and during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. A cross-sectional study with 37 207 participants (mean age: 36. 70 +/- 14. 79, with 77 % women) was conducted in 38 countries through an online survey administered between April and June 2020. The study utilized a pre-tested food frequency questionnaire to explore food consumption patterns both before and during the COVID-19 periods. Additionally, the study computed Food Consumption Score (FCS) as a proxy indicator for assessing the dietary diversity of households. This quantification of global, regional and national dietary diversity across 38 countries showed an increment in the consumption of all food groups but a drop in the intake of vegetables and in the dietary diversity. The household’s food consumption scores indicating dietary diversity varied across regions. It decreased in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) countries, including Lebanon (p

Concepts Keywords
Dietary COVID-19
Global Dietary diversity
June Food consumption pattern
Pandemic Food consumption score
Women Food-related behaviors


Type Source Name
disease MESH emergency
disease MESH COVID-19
disease MESH lifestyle
disease VO frequency

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